A new space
The Finch branch of the SDG Library got a MakerLab upgrade just in time for Maker Month. With this new space, the library is already seeing a major increase in visitor traffic. Pictured from the left, North Dundas Mayor and SDG Library board member Tony Fraser, vice chair of the SDG Library board Margaret McDonald, cataloguing and acquisitions technician Lindsey Schulz, SDG Library district supervisor Jenna Lamarche and library services assistant and maker Amy Mayer. Glover photo

FINCH – Finch’s branch of the SGD Library got a major upgrade just in time for Maker Month.

Walking through the entrance, it may seem like any other ordinary library but looking a little further, you’ll notice a few more “non-traditionals.”

“The idea behind the space is that when you walk in, it still feels like a traditional library. You’ve got your wall of books, you’ve got your children’s area,” said Jenna Lamarche. “But then once you look a little further, you get a taste of the non-traditional including our library of things inventory with our mobile internet hotspots, guitars, ukuleles, keyboards etc. We never had anywhere to store them, now we do.”

The library held an open house to show off the new area Wed., Sept. 25, with SDG Library board member and North Dundas Mayor Tony Fraser welcoming over 60 guests as they came to admire what has been accomplished.

“There was an opportunity that was seen to encourage the increase of patronage,” he said. “We can see some young people here now, enjoying the space, and, when I think back to when I was a kid, we were almost pulled into the library. And now, I see people coming in and today is an indication of that.”

Visitors who attended the grand opening were given a tour of the new space which included a special program for the “MarkerKidz” patrons and 3D printer and Cricut machine demonstrations. MakerKidz is a weekly program that provides hands-on experience maker activities for children six years of age and older.

Lamarche stated that the branch had hit a speed bump in visitor traffic prior to the remodel, and the MakerLab has been improving visitor turnout since it opened.

“Since the space has been open, we’re seeing 40 – 50 people during each of our shifts,” she said. “It’s been busy here.”

For Maker Month, the new space not only offers different crafts, games and other fun activities but children are also able to explore a number of new gadgets and tech.

“The maker space is very much in support of economic development,” said Lamarche. “Maker spaces are founded on the maker movement which is based on the do-it-yourself trend, as we move away from consuming, and more towards making and recycling.”

The MakerLab space has been open since Tues., Sept. 3 and residents are encouraged to come and go as they wish to tackle their own projects or join one of the library’s planned programs.